2014 Around Oregon Annual

Getting Caught is a series of photographs by Lauren Odell Usher Sharpton about that moment a street photographer gets caught in the act of clicking the shutter

I’m excited to be one of the selected artists for this year’s Around Oregon Annual at The Art Center in Corvallis.

Getting Caught is a series of photographs by Lauren Odell Usher Sharpton about that moment a street photographer gets caught in the act of clicking the shutter

One of the photographs from my series, Getting Caught, was juried into the exhibition by Martha Lee of Laura Russo Gallery in Portland, Oregon.

I’m excited to attend the reception and meet some of my fellow Oregon artists. I’m still a newbie here and look forward to meeting new art folks in the area.

Artist Reception: Thursday, May 29, 5:30-7:30 pm
Brown Bag Artist Talk: Wednesday, June 4, 12 noon-1 pm

Martha Lee’s Jurors Statement:

I very much enjoyed the opportunity to serve as juror for The Arts Center’s 2014 Around Oregon Annual exhibition. While selecting just over 40 works from the 475 images submitted was a daunting task, I was impressed by the broad variety of artwork and the diversity of artistic practices as they reflect a vibrant and widespread art community—for which I am very grateful.

As I went through the submissions, a number of issues influenced my process and decisions—the first of which is the challenge of making selections based solely on digital images. I am something of a traditionalist and believe that nothing can replace or replicate the experience of standing in front of, and really looking at, a work of art.

Something is lost when one views a piece on the computer screen. Because of this, my selections tended toward images with a strong visual impact. I was also looking for work that displayed quality craftsmanship and a command of the media. In addition, while I was asked to select only one work per artist, I gave preference to submissions that included several pieces that I felt indicated the creation of a cohesive body of work, as it provided me with a clearer sense of the artist’s voice and his or her exploration of ideas.

Ultimately, while the work I selected stood out in a variety of ways, the choices are based on my personal preferences. Whenever I look at artwork, I am most drawn to work that I connect with and respond to in some way—work that is, in my estimation, technically accomplished as well as intellectually stimulating; work that invites closer scrutiny and engages my mind in a way that expands and enhances my view of the world around me. That is a gift that artists give to all of us through the creation and sharing of their work.

To all the artists who submitted—my sincere thanks for sharing your work with me.

I’m liberating my art.

Postcard reproductions of my latest art project

This year I was happy to discover and join Liberate Your Art. It combines two of my favorite things: mail and art!

Postcard reproductions of my latest art project

I also agree that we need more art in the world and I can’t wait to see what other folks around the globe have been up to in their art studios.

I’m curious who out there is going to receive my art postcard and what they’ll think of it. It’s kind of fun thinking I probably won’t ever find out. But, there will be 6 folks out there that receive a postcard with my artwork on top of it! And, maybe a few mail people will enjoy seeing the colorful faces as they sort the mail.

3rd times a charm

a collage of images of people making art
a collage of images of people making art
A collection of images from various Art Break Day sites / Also my 30for30equals30 art break!

Last Friday, I hosted the third annual Art Break Day in San Francisco’s Justin Herman Plaza. This year I had the pleasure of working with one of my best friends, Amelia Strader of GoGo Craft. It was a perfect day. Two words that jump out for me are “community” and “connection.” This year, Art Break Day expanded to 19 locations across the world. It felt so cool to know that as I was offering art for free to the San Francisco public, there were 18 other places around the world where people were getting the same opportunity to sit down together and make art. The global community joined together to have one big art break. At our site in San Francisco, there were tons of new friendships started across our art tables. It was so fun to watch people walk up with a bit of apprehension and then look at their faces about 15 minutes later. The tables were full of strangers that were talking and laughing and eventually exchanging emails and phone numbers to meet up again in the future. It just feels good to make people happy. I think that’s my favorite thing to do. To make a person smile. And, I think we accomplished that across 19 different cities last Friday. That puts a smile on my face.

Museum of Craft and Folk Art in San Francisco.

I am so in love with the Museum of Craft and Folk Art. I randomly sent an email to them in December and asked if they needed any volunteers. To my luck, they did! So, today was my first day volunteering. I met some of the staff members, got trained of the logistics and goings ons there, and, best of all, I got to see the current exhibition! Which, by the way closes on the 16th, so get on over there if you can.

Being at the museum today did exactly what I hoped it would do. It made me feel like I was actively involved in the art world. The art world does a great deal of stuff that I don’t understand, but I don’t want to shy away from it just because we have different ideas about where to take art in the future. I will just nudge myself inside and get my voice heard…somehow.